Its parent company may have ruled-out hydrogen, but a new trademark application by Porsche shows the company is still exploring its potential.
Despite pursuing synthetic fuels and electric vehicles as an alternative to petrol and diesel, German sports-car company Porsche appears to be keeping the door open for a hydrogen fuel-cell future.
As discovered by CarBuzz, Porsche has filed a patent application in Germany for hydrogen fuel-cell technology, suggesting its engineers are continuing to research and develop the alternative propulsion method.
While Porsche produced a hydrogen-fuelled internal-combustion engine in 2023 – a 4.4-litre V8 fitted to a “luxury-segment reference vehicle” weighing 2650kg – this is believed to be the first time the brand has shown an interest in hydrogen fuel-cell technology.
Unlike internal-combustion engines which are fed hydrogen in place of petrol or diesel, hydrogen fuel-cell vehicles are essentially electric cars that convert hydrogen to electricity, reducing the need for batteries and charging.
Curiously, in early 2023, Porsche’s parent company Volkswagen ruled out using hydrogen for its passenger cars – instead committing to electric vehicles.
Porsche has been investing millions of dollars in the development of synthetic fuels – which use carbon collected from the atmosphere to create synthetic petrol which has a net-zero emissions output – including the announcement of a production site in Tasmania.
At this stage it’s not clear how seriously Porsche is taking hydrogen, however the patent application suggests it’s not completely off the table.